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The Meaning of Hexagram #47

Also called "Exhaustion"

I Ching Hexagram #47

Hexagram #47: Lake over Water

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I Ching Hexagram #47

Oppression and feelings of constraint are the qualities embodied by this foreboding hexagram. This is a time when you may not be taken seriously and may grow weary of such treatment. Others may try to smother you or keep you trapped into playing an old role. It is a time of oppression. But fear not. The challenges will make you a better person. By accessing an inner sense of stability it is possible to stay cheerful in these trying times, and you will then tap into an inner sense of boundless energy. You don't need many words at this time. Honor the silent knowing deep within and you will come through with renewed vigor.

NOTE: Want to know how I Ching hexagram #47, "Water below Lake", is interpreted for questions about dating, marriage and romantic issues? See our special Love I Ching interpretation for hexagram #47

Changing Lines in Hexagram #47

Changes in Line 1

"Traversing the Valley of Gloom"

I Ching hexagram 47 shown with changing-line #1 highlighted

Due to lack of preparedness, mistakes are likely at this time. It could take a while for you to get through this time period. Be patient. The journey through gloom will end within three months.

Changes in Line 2

"Escaping Inner Oppression"

I Ching hexagram 47 shown with changing-line #2 highlighted

All is well on the outer level. But inside you are still likely to feel oppressed at this time. Patience, community, optimism and spiritual connection are the keys to this difficult time.

Changes in Line 3

"Buried by Stones"

I Ching hexagram 47 shown with changing-line #3 highlighted

This is a difficult time period. If you are in relationship, your partner can help shift things for you. If you are not, you will have to get through this trying time alone. Don't lean on what cannot support you. Ride things out and you will return to a sense of freedom.

Changes in Line 4

"The Chariot of Oppression"

I Ching hexagram 47 shown with changing-line #4 highlighted

You are riding through a difficult time. Wait patiently and assistance will arrive.

Changes in Line 5

"Injured Feet"

I Ching hexagram 47 shown with changing-line #5 highlighted

Movement forward on your path is halted. You may be asked to leave your job, or sever a bond. As hard as this may be, it is necessary in order to make room for something better.

Changes in Line 6

"Escaping From Vines"

I Ching hexagram 47 shown with changing-line #6 highlighted

Don't make a mountain out of a mole hill. That which is keeping you tied down is nothing more than a creeping vine that can easily be torn away. Set yourself free

The Two Trigrams Within Hexagram #47

I Ching hexagram #47 is built out of two 3-line trigrams stacked over and under one another. The bottom three lines of hexagram #47 make up the trigram for Water, while the upper three lines make up the trigram for Lake.

Vector image of lower trigram Water in hexagram #47
Lower Trigram of Water
Vector image of upper trigram Lake in hexagram #47
Upper Trigram of Lake

NOTE: An easy way to think about the two trigrams is that the hexagram's upper trigram references external forces or energies, while the lower trigram references internal forces or energies.

Hexagram #47's Lower Trigram of Water

Image of hexagram #47 with lower trigram highlighted

The fluid and forever-changing trigram of water is also sometimes called the trigram of the 'Gorge' or of the 'Abysmal'. Water itself is shapeless and liquid — symbolizing shifting realities and random outcomes. This fluid trigram is often an indication of uncertainty or sudden shifts. The water trigram is associated with the moon's cycles and with the direction north.

Hexagram #47's Upper Trigram of Lake

Image of hexagram #47 with upper trigram highlighted

The blissful trigram representing the lake symbolizes happiness and clarity of thought and communication. Blissful tranquility is referenced here, along with a sense of calm and devotion. The blissful Lake may also point to a 'third daughter' or the map direction west.

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List of all possible changes for hexagram #47

A note on iFate's I Ching translation: This is not a direct translation of the original "Book of Changes" from 1000 BC. While multiple translations of the original text are available, they include many archaic references and can be difficult to understand for 21st century readers. iFate uses our own modern rewritings (two different editions) of the "Book of Changes" which makes interpreting I Ching readings far simpler. For iFate's additional contemporary re-writing of the original text, see our "Love I Ching" translation.

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